Recent news of a data breach involving SP+, the owner of a number of parking garages around Chicago, provides another reminder that Target and Home Depot should not be alone in their concern over data breaches. SP+ informed its customers late last week that malware was used to capture data at a number of its parking garages. (SP+ provided a complete list of the 17 parking garages on its website). It has been reported that the malware installed on SP+’s systems gathered customer credit card information.
As seen with this latest example, data breach targets are increasingly becoming smaller, local businesses. While a smaller company may store less personal data, hackers are finding value in smaller targets which may not have the safeguards implemented by large, multinational corporations. However, as seen with larger corporations, smaller companies are getting the message and are protecting their personal data from hackers. A recent article in Crain’s Chicago Business discusses how many smaller, regional companies are finding value in implementing data breach plans. Crain’s also reports that a recent survey found that cyber liability insurance policies are becoming an integral part of any data breach plan regardless of whether the company is large or small. For example, 26% of the respondents to the study discussed in the Crain’s article stated they had cyber liability insurance coverage, which was a 16% increase over the prior year.
What does the news of a data breach at SP+ mean for us? First, smaller businesses are going to need to take direction from larger businesses and work on their data breach protection plans. Hackers will target smaller corporations which can cause devastating data breaches. Second, insurers will need to continue to develop and offer products that can be integrated into data breach protection plans devised by smaller businesses. Finally, this should translate into increased security for everyone’s private data.